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Sept. 24, 2020

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Construction worker dies after fall at Vancouvercenter

Fall occurred Wednesday morning at the site of the development’s south tower

By , Columbian business reporter
Published:
3 Photos
The construction site for the Vancouver Center south tower on Friday afternoon. One of the other three Vancouvercenter towers is visible in the background.
The construction site for the Vancouver Center south tower on Friday afternoon. One of the other three Vancouvercenter towers is visible in the background. Nathan Howard/The Columbian Photo Gallery

A construction worker died as a result of injuries sustained from a fall on Wednesday while working on the Vancouvercenter south tower project.

The project site is located at the corner of Washington and West Sixth Streets in downtown Vancouver. Workers are currently building the second floor of what will be a six-story apartment tower, which is being built by Vancouver-based Holland Partner Group.

The worker was an employee of Vancouver-based wood framing subcontractor Timberland Inc., according to Tim Church, spokesman for the Washington Department of Labor and Industries. The department was notified of the fatality and has opened an investigation, he said.

A spokesman for Timberland, Luke Sasse, said the fall occurred just before noon on Wednesday. Vancouver fire dispatch logs show that a fire crew and an AMR crew were dispatched at 12:02 p.m. to the project site at 608 Washington St.

Sasse declined to share additional details, stating that Timberland is still conducting its own investigation into the circumstances of the incident.

The worker did not die at the scene, according to Vancouver Fire Department Capt. Raymond Egan. First responders provided advanced life support while transporting the worker to the hospital at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center, he said, and the worker was still alive when they arrived. The worker continued to receive care but later died at the hospital, according to a statement from Holland Partner Group.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of a tradesperson on our job site and extend our condolences to this individual’s family and loved ones,” the company said in the statement. “We are offering support and grief counseling for all our staff and on-site personnel. Employee and community safety are top priorities at Holland Construction — we strive to provide safe and secure work conditions on all of our construction sites.”

The statement added that the company is working with L&I and the Clark County medical examiner’s office to investigate the project site causes of the incident.

The south tower project began construction in June, a little more than a year after Holland purchased the rights to build the tower from previous Vancouvercenter developer Vandevco.

The mixed-use Vancouvercenter project is a redevelopment of the former Lucky Lager brewery site between Washington and Columbia Streets. The project began in 2000.

Three of the four planned towers were completed along with an underground parking garage that extends beneath the entire site, but development of the fourth tower on the block’s southeast portion stalled out due in part to the 2008 recession.

The Holland-built fourth tower is slated for completion in the late summer or early fall of 2020.

The L&I investigation will take up to six months, Church said, and will include an examination of the causes of the accident and if any workplace safety violations occurred.

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